Stagecoach Gold

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StagecoachGold.svg
StagecoachGoldS3.jpg
Stagecoach Gold Scania operating Route S3 to Chipping Norton
Slogan "Catch a little luxury..."
Parent Stagecoach
Founded November 2007
Service type Luxury bus services
Routes 20
Fleet Alexander Dennis Enviro300
Alexander Dennis Enviro400
Optare Solo
MAN 18.240
Operator Stagecoach East
Stagecoach East Kent
Stagecoach East Scotland
Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire
Stagecoach Midlands
Stagecoach Oxfordshire
Stagecoach South
Stagecoach South West
Stagecoach West
Website www.stagecoachgold.com

Stagecoach Gold is a sub-brand used by various Stagecoach bus subsidiaries in the United Kingdom.

Stagecoach Gold (originally Goldline) was launched in 2007 and was designed to attract more middle class passengers to choose bus travel as a method of transportation as well as to reward passengers on some busy and popular routes.

Stagecoach in Oxfordshire currently operates the most Stagecoach Gold routes with a total number of five at present and this number is expected to increase further in the coming years. Stagecoach in Oxfordshire and Stagecoach West both equally own the most amount of Stagecoach Gold branded buses with each division owning a total of forty two at present.

History[edit]

The high specification interior of an Aldershot Goldline vehicle

The Goldline brand was introduced to try and win more middle class motorists to bus services. It was initially trialled in two areas, Perth and Warwick from November 2007, both on routes which has received kick-start funding from the government to help establish the routes. Perth's route 7 used £300,000 of its own money to demonstrate the idea to politicians.[1]

Goldline routes have a luxury specification. Buses have hand stitched leather seats, metallic paint, special flooring and free WiFi. Drivers wear special uniform and there is a Goldline customer charter.[1]

In February 2009 the service was expanded to Aldershot and in September 2009 to Cheltenham and Gloucester on route 94. At this stage the brand name changed from Goldline to Stagecoach Gold, as well as the introduction of a new livery with brighter swoops added, as opposed to the previous gold and blue only livery. The reason behind the name change was that Translink had the rights to the Goldline name, using it on their Ulsterbus coach services, and Stagecoach had to pay Translink a royalty.

In 2010, the Stagecoach Gold brand was extended to services run by Scottish Citylink, where Stagecoach have a 35% shareholding, where the Glasgow to Aberdeen and Glasgow to Inverness services were designated as Citylink Gold.[2]

Services[edit]

GOLD - Torquay to Dartmouth / Plymouth[edit]

The Stagecoach South West service commenced on 30 September 2013. It runs every 30 minutes between Torquay and Plymouth on Monday to Saturday daytimes, connecting with alternate journeys to Dartmouth from Totnes. On Sunday daytimes it runs every two hours between Torquay and Plymouth.[3] This service replaced First Devon & Cornwall's routes X80 and X81 on 27 October 2013.[4]

Operator - Stagecoach South West
Fleet Size - 12

1 - Aldershot to Old Dean[edit]

via Farnbourgh, Frimley and Camberley
The launch of the Aldershot Goldline service

The Aldershot service in the Blackwater Valley between Aldershot, Farnborough and Camberley was upgraded to Goldline status on 8 February 2009. It is on Stagecoach in Hants & Surrey's route 1 which operates every 10 minutes Monday to Saturday daytime and every 30 minutes on evenings and Sundays.

Operator - Stagecoach South
Fleet Size - 17

7 - Scone to Hillend[edit]

via Perth

The service in Perth commenced on 5 November 2007,[1] and is operated by Stagecoach East Scotland.

It uses a fleet of eight Alexander Dennis Enviro300 bodied Alexander Dennis Enviro350Hs, which were the first examples to be built to the new style.[1] The scheme operates on Perth city route 7, which was in its sixth year of growth following the kick-start funding, with growth continuing at 2% a year.[1]

Route 7 runs between Hillend, Perth city centre and Scone, and runs every 10 minutes on Monday to Saturday daytime, and up to every 30 minutes in the evening and Sundays.[5]

In mid-2012 Route 7 was conveted to Hybrid buses using eight Alexander Dennis Enviro300 bodied Alexander Dennis Enviro350Hs.

Operator - Stagecoach East Scotland
Fleet Size - 9

10 - Lower Tuffley to Cheltenham[edit]

via Gloucester and Brockworth
Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N230UD at the launch of Stagecoach West's Service 10 Gold

This service began in December 2012. Stagecoach West have a fleet of 19 Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N230UDs. Buses run every 10 minutes between Lower Tuffley and Cheltenham, Monday to Saturday and on Sundays, buses are every 20 minutes to Cheltenham.

Stagecoach had at one point threatened to remove the Stagecoach Gold brand from route 10 after three buses were severely vandalised within two weeks of the bus' launch.[6]

Operator - Stagecoach West
Fleet Size - 19

13 - Haverhill to Cambridge[edit]

via Linton

Stagecoach East service 13 became a Stagecoach Gold route on 1 June 2014 with eleven new Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N-series Scania N230UDs entering service to operate the route. The service runs every 30 minutes on Weekday and Saturday daytimes and hourly on Sunday daytimes and Weekday evenings.[7]

Operator - Stagecoach East
Fleet Size - 11

16 - Hythe to Canterbury[edit]

via Folkestone and Hawkinge

Stagecoach East Kent service 16 between Canterbury and Hythe received Stagecoach Gold status on 2 November 2014.[8] Ten Stagecoach Gold branded vehicles are currently in service on the route.

Operator - Stagecoach East Kent
Fleet Size - 10

51 - Selsey to Chichester[edit]

via Sidlesham and Hunston

Route 51 from Chichester to Selsey became a Stagecoach Gold service with effect from 24 February 2013. The service runs every 10–15 minutes in the daytime on Mondays to Saturdays, every 70 minutes on Monday to Saturday evenings, and half-hourly on Sunday daytimes.[9]

Operator - Stagecoach South
Fleet Size - 7

66 - Swindon to Oxford[edit]

via Shrivenham and Faringdon

Route 66 between Swindon and Oxford [10] was upgraded to Gold status starting on 22 January 2012. The service runs up to every 30 minutes Monday to Saturday and hourly on Sundays.

Operator - Stagecoach West
Fleet Size - 9

94 - Cheltenham to Gloucester[edit]

via Churchdown

Stagecoach Gold commenced operating on Stagecoach West 94 route between Cheltenham, Churchdown and Gloucester on 12 September 2009. The new service and buses were launched at Cheltenham Racecourse.[11]

The service uses a fleet of Alexander Dennis Enviro400s. The service is run by Stagecoach in Cheltenham.

The route operates every 10 minutes Monday to Saturday daytime and 30 minutes in the evening. Services operate every 20 minutes on Sundays.[12]

Operator - Stagecoach West
Fleet Size - 12

300 - Carlisle to Whitehaven[edit]

The Interior of the upper deck on a Stagecoach Gold Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N-series Scania N230UD bus.
via Workington, Maryport and Wigton

The route operates every hour Monday to Saturday daytime, and every two hours Sunday daytime. It became a Stagecoach Gold service on 5 August 2013[13]

Operator - Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire
Fleet Size - 4

G1 - Warwick to South Farm[edit]

via Woodloes, Percy Estate, Leamington Spa and Whitnash

In Warwick, the service started on 12 November 2007.[14]

The service uses a fleet of 11 Optare Solos on route 66 which was renumbered G1.[14] The service is run by Stagecoach in Warwickshire.

The route operates at a frequency of 8–10 minutes Monday to Saturday daytime and every half hour on evenings and Sundays.[15]

Operator - Stagecoach Midlands
Fleet Size - 15

S1, S2, S7, NS1 & NS2 - Carterton to Oxford[edit]

via Brize Norton and Curbridge (S1 and NS1) Minster Lovell (S7), Witney (S1, S2, S7 and NS1), Eynsham (S1 and NS1)and Headington (S7)
Stagecoach Oxfordshire Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N230UD on route S2 in Oxford in September 2012

In 2010, Stagecoach Oxfordshire introduced the Stagecoach Gold brand on its S1 and S2 services running from Carterton Witney to Central Oxford. Route S1 runs up to every 10 minutes in Monday to Saturday daytimes, every 20 minutes Sunday daytimes, every half-hour Monday to Saturday evenings and every hour on Sunday evenings. Route S2 runs every half-hour on Mondays to Saturday daytimes, and there are a number of express journeys in the rush hours on Monday to Fridays.

Night bus NS1 operates from Oxford to Carterton via Witney and Eynsham. There are eight journeys on this route on Friday/Saturday and Saturday/Sunday nights, and one journey on all other nights. Night bus NS2 operates in the reverse direction, as an express bus from Carterton to Oxford without serving Witney. There are six journeys on this route on Friday/Saturday and Saturday/Sunday nights only.[16]

On 3 July 2014 Stagecoach in Oxfordshire confirmed that they will be running a brand new service connecting West Oxfordshire with the Headington Hospitals in Oxford. Route S7 launched on 27 July 2014 and currently only runs hourly on weekdays until the service is proven successful.[17] Also from 27 July, the S2 service stopped serving Minster Lovell with the new S7 service taking its place.

Operator - Stagecoach Oxfordshire
Fleet Size - 17

S3 - Chipping Norton / Charlbury to Oxford[edit]

via Blenheim Palace and Woodstock

Route S3 became a Stagecoach Gold route in September 2012, with 8 Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N230UDs.

The route operates from Oxford up to every 30 minutes during the daytime (Monday-Friday) with 1 service per hour terminating in Chipping Norton and the other terminating in Charlbury. All services run via Woodstock and Blenheim Palace making the S3 one of Oxfordshire's busiest tourist route. The service runs hourly during the day from Chipping Norton and Charlbury with the estimated journey time of 71 minutes (from Chipping Norton) and 65 minutes (from Charlbury).

The S3 Sunday service also runs up to every 30 minutes from Oxford however all services terminate in Chipping Norton with Charlbury not being served at all. This results in Chipping Norton having a more frequent Sunday service (up to every 30 minutes) than its normal weekday service (up to every 60 minutes).

Route S3 does not have a night service with the last bus leaving Oxford at 23:45 (weekdays).

Operator - Stagecoach Oxfordshire
Fleet Size - 8

S5 & NS5 - Bicester to Oxford[edit]

via Bicester Village and Gosford

At the very end of 2011, and into the start of 2012, the S5 and NS5 service between Bicester and Oxford also received new Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 bodied Scania N230UD as well as an improved frequency throughout. Route S5 runs up to every 15 minutes on Monday to Saturday daytimes, hourly on Monday to Saturday evenings, half-hourly on Sunday daytimes and every 90 minutes on Sunday evenings. Route NS5 runs as four journeys from Oxford to Bicester and three journeys from Bicester to Oxford on Friday/Saturday and Saturday/Sunday nights, with two journeys from Bicester to Oxford on Friday/Saturday and Saturday/Sunday nights only. On Monday/Tuesday to Thursday/Friday nights the route provides one journey from Oxford to Bicester.[18]

Operator - Stagecoach Oxfordshire
Fleet Size - 10

SW1 - Carterton to London[edit]

via Witney

Route SW1 commenced service on Saturday 8 November 2014 and is a new weekend service that will link Witney and Carterton directly with London. The service is only a weekend and bank holiday service and it will also be the first Stagecoach Gold service to use buses fitted with seatbelts.[19] The buses in question were delivered in June and they currently have the default Stagecoach Gold Oxford branding on them, which is unlikely to change.[20]

Operator - Stagecoach Oxfordshire
Fleet Size - 3

X4 - Peterborough to Milton Keynes[edit]

via Oundle, Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough

In November 2011 Stagecoach Gold expanded to the X4 route from Peterborough to Milton Keynes via Oundle, Corby, Kettering, Wellingborough and Northampton.

Operator - Stagecoach Midlands
Fleet Size - 13

X17 - Sheffield to Matlock[edit]

Stagecoach Gold launched on route X17 on 10 November 2014 with 6 new Stagecoach Gold vehicles operating the route.[21]

Operator - Stagecoach Chesterfield
Fleet Size - 6

X46 & X47 - Northampton to Thrapston[edit]

via Weston Favell, Earls Barton, Wellingborough, Rushden and Higham Ferrers.

Each route runs hourly via slightly different routes, on Mondays to Saturdays except evenings.

X46 and X47 became Stagecoach Gold routes in November 2013.[22]

Operator - Stagecoach Midlands
Fleet Size - 9

Future[edit]

In March 2014, Stagecoach Group announced 38 new buses had been ordered to Stagecoach Gold specification, all of which have now entered service as of 10 November.

Stagecoach Group are expected to announce their 2015/2016 order in early 2015 with the Stagecoach Gold brand expected to expand even further with more Stagecoach routes expected to receive Stagecoach Gold branding.


Stagecoach have not yet announced any future Stagecoach Gold routes from 2015 however some possible contenders for the branding include:

  • X30/31 - Wantage to Oxford (Stagecoach Gold vehicles frequently used on these services)
  • X46 - Exeter to Paignton (Stagecoach Gold vehicles frequently used on the service)

Other Services[edit]

G9 & G10 - Scottish Citylink[edit]

Main article: Citylink Gold

The Citylink Gold brand is used for two Scottish Citylink services, the G9 between Glasgow and Aberdeen and the G10 between Glasgow and Inverness.[23] Service specifications are similar to that of the bus services branded as Stagecoach Gold, but with free tea and coffee served all day.[24]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Millar, Allan (December 2007). "£2m two-town trial for Stagecoach's new luxury bus brand". Buses Magazine (633): pg6. 
  2. ^ Catch a little luxury today... Stagecoach South West
  3. ^ First Devon & Cornwall Ltd - PH0004983/31 Vehicle Operator & Services Agency
  4. ^ "Stagecoach targets motorists with £2million trial of Goldline luxury bus concept". Stagecoach Group. 2007-10-29. Retrieved 2009-02-06. 
  5. ^ http://www.gloucestercitizen.co.uk/posh-buses-attacked-Gloucester-vandals/story-17639690-detail/story.html
  6. ^ http://www.stagecoachgold.com/Haverhill-Linton-Cambridge.aspx
  7. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/RMGold16.aspx
  8. ^ Route 51 timetable Stagecoach Gold 24 February 2013
  9. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/localdefault.aspx?Tag=Swindon
  10. ^ "Stagecoach Gold luxury buses introduced on route 94". Stagecoach in Cheltenham. 2009-09-10. Retrieved 2009-09-12. 
  11. ^ "Stagecoach Gold Route 94 Timetable". Stagecoach Gold. 2009-09-12. Retrieved 2009-09-12. 
  12. ^ http://www.stagecoachgold.com/Whitehaven%20-%20Workington%20-%20Maryport%20-%20Aspatria%20-%20Wigton%20-%20Carlisle.aspx
  13. ^ a b "Goldline Stagecoach style". Malcolm Crowe. 2007-11-18. Retrieved 2009-02-06. 
  14. ^ "Goldline G1 timetable". Stagecoach in Warwickshire. Retrieved 2009-02-06. 
  15. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/GetUpload.ashx?Id=4116
  16. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/West%20Oxfordshire%20Gold%20service%20changes.aspx
  17. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/serviceupdatedetails.aspx?Id=4022
  18. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/SW1.aspx
  19. ^ http://www.buszone.co.uk/Up1014.html
  20. ^ http://www.stagecoachbus.com/stagecoach%20gold%20X17.aspx
  21. ^ http://www.northampton-news-hp.co.uk/News/Northampton-News/Stagecoach-launches-18m-investment-in-nine-new-Gold-buses-20131101163000.htm
  22. ^ "Citylink Gold - More than a Journey - times, tickets and prices". Scottish Citylink. Retrieved 2010-07-18. 
  23. ^ "Citylink Gold - More than a Journey - About the Service". Scottish Citylink. Retrieved 2010-07-18. 

External links[edit]